Inspiricon SAP BW Upgrade 7.4

Being successful with Inspiricon Best Practices: Upgrade SAP BW 7.3 to 7.4 at a global pharma group

Today, we present you an upgrade project of Inspiricon. It was a SAP BW Upgrade from 7.3 to 7.4, realized in the years 2015 – 2016.

Our clients‘ requirements were the following:

  • Release change to SAP BW
  • Increase of system stability
  • Integration of HANA-optimized data models

Please find a summary of our approach here:

Our initial position

Before the upgrade, our client had the release SAP BW 7.3 with different service packages. The upgrade to version 7.4 was necessary in order to

  • enhance system performance
  • develop mobile reportings and applications with Fiori
  • keep SAP systems up to date (bringing in the latest SAP information)

The challenge for Inspiricon

Due to the fact that our client is working globally, our project team was confronted with a heterogeneous IT landscape. The existing reporting is also used worldwide. As a consequence, the BI system creates the possibility to work with the data globally on group level in order to ensure a uniform reporting system.

The following challenges had to be solved from the Inspiricon team in this project:

  • Connected systems and related dependencies had to be taken into account
  • The existing landscape is very complex
  • Many projects were ongoing during the release change, all simultaneously on the system that was to upgrade. Organizationally spoken, information exchange between different projects had to be coordinated promptly in all time zones.
  • No interruption of ongoing operations (“silent upgrade”)
  • Test management: ongoing coverage of all existing system functionalities

The project team comprised up to 20 persons, of which two were Nearshoring resources (BI-IT). The Inspiricon Nearshoring-team contributed the onsite-team not only with its long-time experience and quality standards but also with a significant cost benefit. Read more on Nearshoring here.


Inspiricon Project Approach

Inspiricon Project Approach


Successful project closing

Go-Live was at the end of May 2016, followed by an intensive Hyper Care Phase for 3 weeks. During this time, our Inspiricon team supported the client until the system was running as performant and stable as it was required.

Due to the release change, our client is now able to use the latest HANA objects entirely and to benefit from their performance advantage. Customer requirements were fully met – subsequent projects are already assigned.

Inspiricon Best Practices

We can learn a lot from successful projects. That is why we developed best practices for future projects from this upgrade project. They include the following and can be transferred to other projects:

  1. Upgrade process (Approach, Upgrade Project Timeline)
  2. Upgrade of technical plan (Pre-upgrade, Upgrade and post-upgrade checklists)
  3. Resource Matrix (Project Organigram, Roles and Responsibilities, Communication Matrix)
  4. Challenges and recommendations

Additional to this blog post, we recommend you to read our Best Practice “Inspiricon Best Practices in use” (only available in German).

You are interested in SAP BW? Read more on You are also welcome to contact us directly – your contact person for SAP BW is Michael Schmer.


Istvan Boda SAP BI Consultant
Phone: +49 (0) 7031 714 660 0
01_Cluj Napoca Quelle Mihai Catoiu

Nearshoring, the effective and cost optimized Competence Center in: Cluj-Napoca, Romania

We can notice in Deloitte’s 2015 Global Outsourcing and Insourcing Survey that many customers started to demand more from their vendors, expecting from them to deliver qualitatively as well as quantitatively beyond agreement values. Many companies started to look for new strategic technology partners near home. Why is that? Why could nearshoring be considered the new offshoring? German companies are taking into consideration Eastern European IT services as an alternative to established offshoring countries. The advantages are obvious: compared with India and China as nearshore providers, Eastern Europe is both culturally and geographically closer. Also important are the good German language skills and a lower employee fluctuation.

How does nearshoring work?

As the digitalization is expanding, many companies are exploring platform dynamics as Gartner mentioned in the CIO Insight Survey from 2016. It shows that there is a driving penetration of the bimodal platform, which derives from separating different parts of the business that will result in:

Reasons for Nearshoring

Reasons for Nearshoring

Many companies are trying to separate different parts of their business, looking for better quality of service and for vendors that are providing skilled resources close to their location – which will result in a fast-tracking strategic business innovation. As a result, many companies started to see an opportunity in nearshoring for optimizing their business outcomes. It takes place mainly in Eastern Europe because of the continuous growth in sectors such as IT, engineering and automobile.

Top 10 nearshoring destinations in Europe

  1. Bulgaria
  2. Poland
  3. Lithuania
  4. Germany
  5. Romania
  6. Estonia
  7. Latvia
  8. UK
  9. Hungary
  10. Spain
Top 10 European Outsoucing Destinations - Source A.T. Kearney

Top 10 European Outsoucing Destinations – Source A.T. Kearney

Why choosing Romania for nearshoring?

Gartner named the IT market in Romania as one of the fastest growing sectors, with a turnover of about 1 billion Euros and growth rates of 40 to 60% per year. Other reasons for choosing Romania for nearshoring are:

Reasons for Nearshoring in Romania

Reasons for Nearshoring in Romania


When speaking about Romania as a nearshoring market, there are many advantages that should be taken into consideration:

Reasons for Nearshoring in Romania

Reasons for Nearshoring in Romania


Romania has already received recognition from many global players:

Romania - The New Technology Hub for Outsourcing

Romania – The New Technology Hub for Outsourcing

Romanian competition analysis

Key arguments for Romania compared to the main competitors Poland, Bulgaria, Czech Republic and Hungary are:

  • it is more stable concerning politics and the economy
  • the unemployment rate is really low
  • the government improves tax administration and collection transparency and it supports a legal framework for foreign investments.

On the other hand, there is a need for improvement in the education sector in comparison to other countries and overall economic conditions in order to increase the GDP.

Eastern Europe 2015 - Comparison Economic and Political Factors

Eastern Europe 2015 – Comparison Economic and Political Factors

Future opportunities and growth

Future Opportunities and Growth Romania

Future Opportunities and Growth Romania


All these advantages are used by Inspiricon SRL in Cluj to deliver the best in class service for supporting our clients’ projects in:

  • Planning and execution of SAP BW/BO upgrade
  • Blueprint and implementation of SAP BW/BO solutions
  • Testing and regression testing in current projects or release strategy.
  • Monitoring of data loads in the Go-Live phase as well as later on in the productive environment and optional the preparation for outsourcing to a 24/7 provider.

In the last 2 years, Inspiricon SRL delivered a countable added business value and more effectiveness in the project execution for all customers as several customer success stories can demonstrate.

Are you interested in Cluj as a Nearshoring location? Do not hesitate to contact us!

Authors: Cristina Botea and Gabriel Simon (both Inspiricon SRL)



Claudio Volk Member of the Management Board
Phone: +49 (0) 7031 714 660 0